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Venezuela > Energy and natural resources > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

Editorial

Index of tables

  1. Energy and natural resources
  2. Leading lawyers

The ‘excellent’ team at Hoet Pelaez Castillo & Duque is renowned for its experience advising on major oil and gas, mining, energy and infrastructure projects, and has remarkable experience assisting clients on their interaction with the Venezuelan government. Recent work includes acting for Gazprombank regarding the expansion of Petrozamora, a joint venture of the client with PDVSA; and assisting the Yankuang Group on its negotiations with PDVSA, the Central Bank of Venezuela and the Venezuelan Mining Corporation to set up a joint venture for the exploitation of gold mines in Bolivar state. Other clients include Halliburton, Rosneft, Statoil, and Valero Energy. Practice head Miguel Rivero has a ‘solid understanding of the legal and practical realities of doing business in a challenging environment’ and is recommended along with José Gregorio Torrealba and José Alberto Ramírez.

Despacho de Abogados Miembro de Hogan Lovells is a major player in the energy sector. State-owned oil company Petróleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) is the practice group’s key client and the team also works for its subsidiaries and joint ventures, such as Pequiven, Polietilenos de América, and Metanol de Oriente. Recent work for PDVSA includes assisting with EPC contracts and financing for the Pirital gas project; advising on a joint venture with PetroChina; and assisting with the development, construction, and financing of the two-train CIGMA LNG-liquefaction project. Latin America practice head Bruno Ciuffetelli, Luis Bottaro and Gonzalo Rodriguez-Matos are the key contacts.

The ‘top notch’ practice at Norton Rose Fulbright is known for its strength in the oil-and-gas industry. Recent work includes assisting Maersk Drilling with the divestment of its drilling barge activities in Venezuela to Barrystar Holding, acting for Tesco Corporation with the transfer of its Venezuelan operations to Proct-petrol, and advising Sierra Oil and Gas on a joint venture in Mexico. Other clients include Chevron, Nexen Energy, and PEMEX. The ‘very knowledgeableSergio Casinellihas a pragmatic approach to problem solving’ and is recommended along with Daniela Jaimes and Natalija Vojvodic. Former practice head Elisabeth Eljuri took up an in-house position at Sierra Oil and Gas in Mexico.

Baker McKenzie SC routinely handles regulatory and contractual matters in the energy and natural resources sector, and also has expertise in expropriation cases. Practice head Eugenio Hernández-Bretón regularly advises international clients in relation to mining and oil-and-gas projects in Venezuela, and has also assisted in the negotiation of EPC contracts and with project financings. Maria Eugenia Reyes has particular expertise in regulatory matters and negotiations with state-owned enterprises. Roberto Mendoza has retired from the practice.

D’Empaire Reyna Abogados is frequently chosen by foreign companies investing in the oil-and-gas sector in Venezuela. Recent work includes assisting Rosneft and Chevron with their respective investments in Venezuela and related contractual and finance matters. Other clients include Eni, Repsol, Weatherford, ONGC Videsh, and BGP International. Fulvio Italiani, Arnoldo Troconis and Carlos Omaña are the key advisors.

The fast-growing practice at InterJuris Abogados has acquired several new clients in the oil-and-gas sector. Recent work includes advising Harvest Natural Resources, Pluspetrol and Vinccler Oil & Gas on their negotiations with state entities regarding the Petrodelta joint venture, and advising Enerset on negotiations for the construction of a power plant in Lake Maracaibo. Other clients include Gazprom, Rosneft, and China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC). Experienced and prompt practice head Gabriela Rachadell de Delgado is recommended along with Juan José Delgado. The team was recently strengthened with the arrival of Ira Vergani from Rosneft and Daniela Caruso from Chevron.

Torres, Plaz & Araujo assists clients in the oil-and-gas sector in relation to regulatory, corporate and commercial matters, as well as finance, tax, and labour law issues. Recent work includes assisting BP with the restructuring of its current presence in Venezuela, advising Odebrecht on a joint venture with CVP (a subsidiary of PDVSA), and assisting BP with the restructuring of its current Venezuelan operations. The practice was also instructed by PetroSaudi Oil Services and Wärtsilä. The ‘knowledgeable’ Juan Carlos Garantón Blanco and Valentina Cabrera head the practice.

Travieso Evans Arria Rengel & Paz has a longstanding reputation serving major companies in the oil-and-gas sector, including advising on joint ventures with PDVSA and assisting companies which offer services to PDVSA. The practice also acts for mining companies in relation to contracts, licences and concessions, and represents them before government agencies. Eduardo Travieso Uribe and Simón Guevara Camacho are key contacts.

Mendoza Palacios Acedo Borjas Páez Pumar & Cía is known for its work in the electricity sector and is highly regarded for its regulatory expertise. The team continues to assist Andritz Hydro, Voith Hydro, and their consortium Euro-Bras Guri with regard to the refurbishment project for the Guri Hydropower Plant, the largest hydroelectric facility in Venezuela. It is also advising Va Tech Hydro and Andritz Hydro regarding the supply and installation of major equipment in the Yacambú-Quíbor hydraulic plant. Esteban Palacios Lozada is the key contact.

Rodríguez & Mendoza’s team has been advising several international oil companies on joint ventures for exploration and the reactivation of marginal fields. Reinaldo Hellmund is an experienced adviser in the oil-and-gas sector.

WDA legal, S.C.’s co-founding partner, Ramón Azpúrua, is recommended as an experienced advisor in the oil-and-gas sector. Recent work includes assisting a major Russian company regarding its participation in several joint-ventures in Venezuela for the development and exploitation of oil fields, and acting as local counsel for an oil-services company in an ICSID arbitration process regarding the expropriation of its assets by the Venezuelan government.

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